Success doesn’t happen overnight – it comes to those who go after it. Just ask any successful real estate agent, and they will tell you no different. Dedication and hard work aside, they got to where they are with persistence and the belief that luck also has a part to play. You just need to know how to go after it.
However, even the best real estate agents today started as amateurs who didn’t know what they were getting into. They made mistakes; mistakes that you might be making right now. They lost leads and in some cases, loyal clients, not to mention a ton of money on foregone investment opportunities. And they still kick themselves for not taking advantage of conversion opportunities when they could.
So how did they get from square one to where they are today? Here is how:
1. ESTABLISH A STRONG INTERNAL NETWORK FOR EASY TRANSACTIONS
Deals tend to go downhill when relationships turn sour. Successful real estate agents know the value of creating and maintaining relationships with not only clients, but also those involved in the process.
To adopt this habit, start by honing the right relationships:
Develop a Strong Internal Network: A typical transaction can include a multitude of professionals. However, most buyers and investors either don’t know or have the time to search for these people themselves. To make transactions easier, do what the successful agents do – develop a strong network who you can recommend to your clients. For example, your list of contacts can include anyone from trusted home insurance agents to home inspectors and mortgage lenders. As an example, consider Charlotte-based real estate agent Cristina Grossu. In an interview, the accomplished agent said how creating relationships with other realtors and lenders became the backbone of her success.
Stay in Touch with Clients: The prospect of juggling several clients (all who have different requirements) may seem daunting to you now, but it comes naturally to veteran real estate agents. How do they make so many relationships work? They communicate, even if they don’t have to. Even if this means a simple text message about a pending loan request, regular updates show clients that you are working diligently behind the scenes. To secure long-term relationships, keep your clients happy by returning phone calls immediately and updating them on your progress. Calgary-based agent Joe Samson recommends that new agents should “forget about the sale, and start caring about people.” According to Joe, clients stay loyal if they realize that you care about them.
2. GIVE YOUR BUSINESS THE RIGHT EXPOSURE
At the end of the day, the only way to make any real estate business successful is to acquire as many leads as you can. Focus on finding and maintaining a healthy flow of leads. This will enable your business to stay on track and reduce your legwork. To utilize this strategy:
Make Leads See Your Message: We talked about how agents can get to the top by communicating with clients. You can nurture leads by delivering your message in ways that your clients see it. To illustrate, consider how pro real estate agent Joshua Smith successfully grew his business from scratch by using door hangers – a smart tactic that guaranteed that people (potential customers) would see his message.
Use Online Platforms: The best thing about online platforms is that a lot of them offer free advertising. Social media websites, like Facebook, provide several ways for businesses to reach and engage with customers. As an example, consider the successful real estate agent, Aaron Hendon, who uses both personal and real estate related posts to engage his clients.
3. USE TECHNOLOGY TO FIND LEADS AND STREAMLINE WORKFLOW
The real estate market was a different beast before the Internet took the world by storm. Information was buried in folders, which made it hard for buyers to access property records and assess whether certain properties were worthwhile investments.
Thanks to advanced interconnectivity, the buyers today are more informed. Everything from a property’s listing details to pricing forecasts can be accessed through a smartphone. Several apps allow potential buyers to search for homes and even get in touch with professional real estate agents.
To illustrate, have a look at these stats:
- Real estate and rental website Zillow received 36 million visits a month in July 2017 – Source
- 99% of millennials search for homes on the web compared to 89% baby boomers – Source
The trend of using technology is increasing by the passing day. Buyers will keep using it for information and successful real estate agents know it.
You can use technology to:
Find and Attract Leads: Long-term clients stick around because they find an agent’s services suitable for them. However, they were leads once. How do you find leads like these today? You can consider investing in SEO’d websites that can help you find the right audience and give you great opportunities for conversions. You can also attract leads by using the right tools to promote your business. To illustrate, consider one of the top Chicago-based agents, Kinga Korpacz, who leverages the power of real estate videos and virtual tours to deliver value propositions to clients.
Make Paperwork Easy: Every agent knows how complex and tiring mortgage loan processes can be for potential buyers. The best real estate agents focus on making these processes as convenient for clients as possible. You can use online tools, like DocuSign, which allow you to get signatures electronically from clients.
4. STEP OUT OF YOUR COMFORT ZONE, BUT BE CONFIDENT ABOUT IT
Seeking advice from mentors or experienced agents is good when you are starting your career. It shows you the ropes and you get the chance to learn from the best. However, the best agents didn’t become successful by following other people for long. Eventually, they went their own way.
Stepping out of your comfort zone can be a frightening experience. You are bound to run into obstacles along the way. But nothing worth doing is ever easy.
You can make this easier on yourself by faking confidence, especially during situations where it’s the last thing you feel like doing.
Why is this important? Keep in mind, people who close the most deals and are top earners, have one thing in common – they exude confidence. They also remain confident during situations when it’s the last thing they feel like doing. They don’t express remorse over failed opportunities, at least not for long.
Of course, pretending will only get you so far. Yes, confidence is an admiral quality. But keep in mind; the best real estate agents always brush up on their research too.
For a real world example, consider agent Andrew Fortune of Colorado Springs. Looking back, Andrew regrets relying too much on his brokerage’s guidance to run his business rather than trusting his own instincts. His advice for newbie agents is to stop following people who have been doing the same thing for years and instead be innovative themselves.
5. PREPARE YOURSELF FOR THE WORST, BUT HOPE FOR THE BEST
In real estate, the only real constant is change. Mortgage prices fluctuate due to factors like economic recession and war. Consider the housing market crash in 2007 which was one of the worst financial crises in US history. Many investors went bankrupt or lost money in foreclosures.
Those who have been in the market for a long time now, be it real estate agents or investors, know to expect incidences like these. They know that financial markets are unpredictable and can turn at any moment. To prepare for the worse, they keep up with marketing and pricing forecasts. So be sure to follow their footsteps in this respect.
In an interview, Dallas-based broker, Jeff Knox, advised budding real estate agents to find firms where they can draw from the experiences of successful mentors.
You know what they say, when in doubt, learn from the best. Keep these tips in mind when running your own real estate business.